South Florida Sun-Sentinel – Sure it’s a ways off, but there’s a new hotel in the works joining the downtown Delray Beach neighborhood near the recently opened The Ray Hotel Delary Beach and the Hyatt Place Delray Beach.
The Hampton Inn by Hilton is under construction alongside the Pineapple Grove Arts District creative enclave. When the hotel opens sometime in January-March 2023, the street address will be in the 200 block of NE 5th Ave (US 1/Federal Highway).
“This is going to be a nice addition to the north end of downtown and Pineapple Grove,” says Laura L. Simon, executive director of the Delray Beach Downtown Development Authority. “The great part is that this was a vacant property, which will now add vibrancy and bring more jobs to our community.”
The four-story building will have 136 guest rooms and suites. There will be an underground parking garage as well as valet parking.
“We’re building a custom-design Hampton Inn,” explains Dan Puglisi, vide president of openings at Peachtree Hotel Group, which is developing the hotel. “This is not just a prototypical Hampton Inn that you can find anywhere in the USA. [It will] have a coastal look and feel. We are working with an interior designer and architect in Delray Beach — which is not common for the Hampton Inn brand — and we’ve been able to do some unique things.”
Part of the reason for signing on a local design firm is that Delray Beach has very specific development guidelines and zoning rules. Atlanta-based Peachtree tapped Currie Sowards Aguila Architects because the company has been based in Delray Beach for almost 52 years and is a “stone’s throw” from the hotel site.
“I literally look out my office window and I can see the project,” says Keith A. Beal, a principal with the firm. “We’re literally next door.”
Beal adds that the new Hampton Inn will have unique Delray Beach touches such as:
The fourth floor rooms that face 5th Avenue (US 1) and SE Second Street will have “substantial private terraces that are untypical…of Hampton Inns.”
-The interior will have “That beachy feel. You can walk in the hotel with flip flops and not feel out of place.”
-The wall colors, textures and prints are being selected to give “the Delray Beach village by the sea [vibe]. It is a city, but they like to keep a village feel.”
-The exterior will have a small public plaza space, which is another must-have from the city. “That is part of the required civic space element. You have to give land back to the city, be it a park or a plaza.”
-Much of the art in the public spaces will come from local galleries.
-About 90% of the parking will be underground.
Even though the hotel won’t have and food or beverage offerings — they are planning on partnering with restaurants along the buzz-worthy Atlantic Avenue corridor — Peachtree’s Puglisi maintains that meeting all of Delray Beach’s design rules is worth it because of what the downtown area has to offer travelers.
“New development is always tricky. A lot goes into it,” he explains. “This site is rare gem to find. [We’re looking for] a site that can fit a property, such as Hampton Inn, in a location where there’s a great leisure guest experience. In that respect, Delray Beach has got tons to offer.”